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In Loving Memory of Mohamed Soumah

Berkeley High School Class of 2018

Mohamed Soumah, a beloved Berkley High School (BHS) alumni, was shot and killed on Saturday, December 1. The homicide occurred at a party in Oakland. The events leading to Soumah’s death are vague; authorities have yet to determine information about what triggered a possible dispute. Police also have yet to locate and identify the individual responsible for Soumah’s death.

Though limited, police have provided some details about the tragic event. Soumah attended a party in East Oakland on a Saturday night. At around 10PM, police received several alerts and calls notifying them of a shooting. They reported to the house hosting the party, discovered that Soumah suffered a gunshot wound, and pronounced him dead. No one else was hurt.

Soumah was a member of the BHS and Berkeley Technology Academy communities. He graduated last June as part of the class of 2018. BHS has responded to the news of Soumah’s tragic passing with deep sorrow, with many students posting on social media honoring Soumah and highlighting moments they shared with him. Those who did not know him personally were still impacted by the devastating news, remembering seeing him in the hallways and witnessing his glowing, ever-present smile.

Isabella Ingersoll

“Mo was still just a boy with his whole life ahead of him … He’s not just some other ‘Man Shot At Oakland Party.’”

– Tucker Andrew   

Ayisha Friedman

“He never stopped laughing and being happy … I hope people remember him for his smile and his love for the people around him, and not forget how real he was to everyone that knew him.”

– Oliver Cohen

“Mo was a light. Doesn’t matter where he went or who he was with, he put a smile on their face.”

– Darshan Kamenetzky

“Mohamed Soumah could put a smile on anyone’s face. Since sixth grade, when I first met Mo, his bright smile and welcoming dimples made me feel at ease. At the lunch table I could always rely on him to evolve a otherwise meaningless conversation into a segment of lighthearted laughs. This became so routine and special to us that Mohamed and some other students at Willard Middle School decided to make ‘The Ultimate Book of Inside Jokes,’ where we could go back and recall the funny ‘roasts’ and little moments we all cherished. Beyond our memories of him in school, I know many of us remember him as a great soccer player and teammate. Playing on the Willard co-ed team with him was something that I’ll never forget. From his amazing out of the box free kicks, and smart passing, to his ball hog moments, everyone could see his natural talent, this would later earn him the nick name ‘Balotelli’ at the soccer camp we attended in the summers. Being one of the few girls on the team, he never failed to make me feel like just as important of a player as the other kids, and would never ‘take it easy’ on me just because I was a girl on a dominantly boys team. I am thankful for that, and because of him, I learned to be a tough player and to not get demoralized by other peoples’ expectations of me. I think what was the most memorable of all was his celebratory dance moves after every goal that would make the team feel ecstatic. These are the memories he left behind, engraved in our childhoods and that carried on to this day. As tragic as this news has been for the Berkeley community, I know me and countless others who were able to share moments like these with Mohamed feel grateful to have known someone who was so energetic and uplifting.”

– Leticia Pereira